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Aalto University

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Aalto University
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The Finnish Aalto University specialises in audiovisual communication, new media, moving images and scenography. The university's media centre Lume is an outstanding national education, research, development and production centre that combines the various disciplines of cinema, television, digital media and set design. As one of the best-equipped media production centres of European media universities, with over 300 film, stage and television events annually on 11,000 m2, Lume attracts over 30,000 visitors per year.

The request

The production and audience facilities within the centre have been designed to allow maximum flexibility and versatility, including through extensive data sharing and computer access for users.

Video and data material can thus be made available quickly wherever it is needed. Access to videos and data is possible regardless of the user's location; all common formats such as Flash, MediaPlayer, Quicktime, RealMedia, DVD/MPEG, audio and Office files are supported.

The solution

The local system integrator Mespek installed an IHSE Draco major. This highly available KVM matrix switch provides the center with the flexibility it needs for a wide range of applications. The main task of the matrix switch is to connect twelve computers and twelve control stations, which are located in a secure and separate equipment room. This enables access to data and programs stored on the computers - regardless of the location of the devices.

The studios and control rooms can be set up on the fly as requirements arise and their functions can be adapted to suit the needs of the moment. There is no need to assign each studio to a specific task. In the television studio function, for example, a number of computers are used to support different types of production such as single and multi-camera productions, virtual studios, special effects or motion capture. Additional computers are used in post-production as video servers and virtual studios and for computer graphics. Computers are also needed for video projection during motion capture.

The use

The entire system is locally controlled and monitored via network connections and computers located in the equipment room and production office.

"We have many dual-head computers with Nvidia Quadro6000 graphics cards on which we carry out intensive graphic work," explains Tony Tolin from Aalto. "The matrix system must enable instantaneous switching between powerful computers for virtual studio applications and our high-end studio system. This is exactly what the Draco major KVM matrix switch offers, allowing instant switching of digital single, dual and quad-head video signals up to 1080p to the monitors. In addition, analog and digital audio signals as well as transparent, bidirectional USB 2.0 data are transported, which can be used to connect HID devices, tablets, jog wheels, storage media or webcams."